devRant Co-Founder Talks Shipping Code & Making Poops Fun

Build//Better BuildBetter Leave a Comment

David Fox, Co-Founder & Head of Eng / devRant

No worries, no SPAM. Opt-out anytime.

After a day on the developer front line, we all need to blow off steam. Now there’s an app for that. We got to chat with David Fox, co-founder and head of engineering of NYC-based devRant, about the app and the tools he uses to make ranting about bosses, projects and general idiocy user friendly.

Does Zuckerberg Still Code?
If David could have lunch with any developer, it would be the Zuck himself. “He’s a developer and he founded a successful company that is engineering focused,” Fox said. “I would ask him, because I’m curious, how much programming he still does.”

David’s Dev Toolbox: Tools should be: Efficient, Fast, Simple

1. PHPStorm
Fox appreciates features such as great static analyzation. “You can easily click through the different functions and methods,” he said. “It’s very good at understanding the code so it gives you a lot of short cuts. It knows how to work with the code and it’s very efficient; it makes following the flow of the code very easy.”

The cost of the tool also appeals to Fox, who says with a price tag of $100-$200 per year, it is not very expensive.

2. HAProxy
“This is more website related. We use it for our database infrastructure (neo4j). It allows us to create fall-backs for our database,” Fox explained. “If one server goes down, it has these help checks available. It makes detecting outages very effective. With an administration interface so you can see all the stats on all your servers; it’s cool to see how many requests are incoming.”

The simplicity of the tool makes setup easy and allows the whole infrastructure to be more stable, Fox adds. “You set up rules to show you how much data is going through.”

HAProxy is recommended by Neo4j with their clustering, Fox says about the data base he uses. Other features to point out include that it’s easy to customize and it’s Opensource.

3. git hooks / rsync (productivity hacks)
For development and code syncing, Fox likes using the productivity hacks git hooks and rsync. “It allows you to sync code. It syncs your file system up to the development folder.” It definitely helps with the development process, Fox says, by deploying to the test environment. Plus, as a productivity hack, there is no cost.

So…What’s Next for devRant?

Fox’s group is currently working on improving the main feed algorithm for devRant by personalizing the feed.

“We want to give it more personalization and more learning what stuff you like…not continuing to show you stuff you’ve already seen.”

Users have provided Fox with a unique perspective on the app, which he says a lot of people use in the bathroom. “People say how it makes their poops more fun!” That’s a brand promise developers can get behind.

About Build//Better

BuildBetter eMagazine, brought to you by Stackify, is a free downloadable publication bringing together insight and advice from some of the smartest minds in the developer world. Each quarterly issue is packed with exclusive tips and tools from industry leaders, helping developers work better, code better, and build better careers.